(May 10, 2019) Dramatic images surfaced on social media late Sunday night of what appeared to be a white sedan that ran off the road and flipped over near the Oceanic Motel sign downtown.

Town of Ocean City Communications Manager Jessica Waters said police responded at about 12:36 a.m. to reports of a vehicle upside down in the water at the Oceanic Fishing Pier at South 1st Street.

“When officers arrived, they located the car, which was not in the water but was laying on its roof,” Waters said, adding the driver, later identified by police as Sumpter Lawrence Mcwatters, 33 of Halethorpe, Maryland, was out of the car and uninjured, and refused EMS treatment at the scene.

According to Waters, a preliminary investigation found the vehicle “had gone straight into the curve, jumped the curve and struck a pylon, at which time it rolled over and came to a rest on its roof approximately 30 feet from the water. The driver was able to kick out the window and climb out.”

Mcwatters allegedly told police he’d had six alcoholic beverages. He failed a field sobriety test at the scene and later submitted to a breath test that resulted in a blood alcohol content of .19, well above the legal limit.

He was arrested and charged with five counts related to unsafe driving, including driving under the influence of alcohol, driving while impaired by alcohol, and failure to control vehicle speed to avoid a collision.

A trial was scheduled June 10 at Worcester County District Court in Ocean City.

Several images and at least one video of the crash site were posted on social media just after midnight, Sunday.

One person offered, “The things you see driving around 1 a.m. in Ocean City. No idea how this guy got his car upside down on the docks next to the OC fishing pier building.”

George Leukel, a local Realtor with Holiday Real Estate, posted that the car missed the curve and ran through the motel sign, flipped over, “and the driver walks away.”

Video on social media showed the car, still upside down, being turned right-side-up on its wheels and pulled through the Oceanic Motel sign from the crash site by a Cropper’s Towing truck.

Josh Davis is an MDDC award-winning editor and reporter at the Bayside Gazette and Ocean City Today newspapers, covering Berlin and Ocean Pines, Maryland. He is the author of three novels, including 'Vanishing is the Last Art' (2012). He lives in Berlin.

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